Thursday, March 15, 2007

How To Spot A Passive Income Opportunity

If you are searching for a passive income opportunity you are definitely on the right track towards creating financial freedom. Passive income is what is often referred to as smart money and it is the preferred method with which the rich earn their income. Passive income is income that continues to be generated long after the initial effort or work. You quite literally get paid over and over again for work done once.

The majority of people earn their living through linear income which is income that is directly proportional to the time and effort you put in. Passive income not only gives you financial freedom, but more importantly it gives you the freedom of time. With passive income you will earn money regardless of whether you work or not. I always liked the analogy of an apple tree. Once you've planted it and it matured it will keep bearing fruit season after season. Creating passive income streams for yourself is like planting little apple trees. Once they matured they will keep bearing fruit and as they grow bigger and stronger over the years they will produce even more and better fruit.

Although this concept sounds incredibly alluring, the challenge as usual is 'how?' Passive income has become a bit of a catchphrase and Robert Kiyosaki's Rich Dad books really popularized the term. It tends to be a little deceiving as the word 'passive' tends to be confused with 'automatic' or doing nothing. Even though the passive income is passive, you still have to set it up and plant the apple tree. Passive income won't be handed to you on a silver platter. If it's generated through property, then you still have to find it, make the deal, buy it and do all the paperwork and admin involved. If you wish to earn passive income by writing a book, or a play or a movie, you still have to sit down, write it, publish it and go through all the various formalities before you can sit back and enjoy the freedom of passive recurring income.

Today there are more passive income opportunities than ever before, both online and off line. The internet above all has opened up a vast new world with numerous avenues to explore in virtually any niche market you can think of. Spotting a really good passive income opportunity can be a bit of a challenge as the sheer amount of choices can be overwhelming.

There are basically two ways of earning passive income online (although it's not exclusively an online thing). The first is to create your own product or idea and to sell it to someone else who will do the marketing and 'selling' for you. You would then earn royalties for this. Earning royalties is very common in the music industry and can be highly lucrative. But, if you don't the next number one hit single in you head, then there is a very powerful alternative.

You don't need to create your own product to earn passive income. You can earn passive income off other people's products through affiliate and associate programs. You can build a website, where you do the work once, but earn recurring income through affiliate commissions. This is only one of many ways you can earn passive income online. It seems like the biggest challenge is not in finding a passive income opportunity, but rather in deciding on one. Here are some basic guidelines to help you spot a good passive income opportunity.

» Be careful of over-inflated testimonials and promises. Most of them are made up. Try and cross check the various testimonials and see if you can match up what they promise. If you can contact the person giving the testimonial, then do so. There is nothing like real answers and advice from someone who is actually making a success from what you are about to embark on.

» Do your due diligence on the company that drives the program. When it comes to affiliate programs, stay with the 'big guns' like Clickbank, Commission Junction and Linkshare (there are many more reliable ones out there) as far as possible. They are less likely to disappear after 2 years and there is nothing worse than working really hard to set up your passive income system only to see it evaporate into thin air.

» There are plenty of passive income opportunities in 'fad' and 'hot' products, but they rarely last long term. You might do well for a couple of months, but that hardly justifies the initial work and the prospect of earning lifetime commission that you could earn. Make sure than when you do promote products that they have a decent lifetime and use your own good judgment. Try and think two years ahead and see if the product will still be needed and whether it's got potential for growth.

» Make sure that you believe and trust in the product. If you don't, then you would never be able to promote it with the necessary confidence needed to be successful. Setting up a passive income system requires a great initial push and it can be hard to get it up and running. Make sure it's something you love, something you believe in and something worth while. This is vital in creating the necessary motivation.

A passive income opportunity is only that – an opportunity. Until and unless you grab it and take action it won't do anything for you. It's never really about the opportunity, but rather about what you do with the opportunity that really counts. You've got nothing to loose and everything to gain. Remember that we only tend to regret the things we don't do. The one thing I know for a fact is this: passive income really make me sleep very well at night!

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